The best 4th of July celebrations are ones without incident

This year's 4th of July will be more subdued. Several communities statewide have canceled their fireworks displays. Mesa County remains under Stage One Fire Restrictions. Nearly all of Colorado is under either Stage One or Stage Two Fire Restrictions this holiday. The ban is obviously because of safety concerns. Whatever your plans are for this week, the best celebrations are the ones without incident. Here are "5 Tips For A Safe 4th Of July"!

1-Keep A Close Eye On That Grill-I cookout like once or twice a week. I have your standard charcoal grill. I always make sure and move it onto my driveway and cook a safe distance away from trees or anything combustible. There were actually a couple windy days that I decided not to fire it up for concerns an ember could be picked up by the breeze. Once you get your grill lit, never leave it. Also, make certain it's cooled off completely before moving it.

2-Check Your Tow Chains-More than one Colorado wildfire has been started from the sparks of a dragging chain. When you hook up the boat or camper make sure your safety chain is the proper distance above the pavement. Double check them and do a "walkaround" at every stop along the way.

3-Don't Drink And Drive-Law enforcement will be out with extra checkpoints and patrols through the weekend. There's nothing like a trip to jail to ruin your weekend. The only thing worse is someone getting injured or killed because of an impaired driver.

4-Always Ware Your Lifejacket-I'm surprised at how many people take to the water without one. If you're fishing from the front deck of a bassboat, you don't need it on. However, anytime the big motor is running, in a boat of any kind, have your lifejacket on. Rivers offer their own risks. Falling out of a canoe or kayak is likely is moving water. Too many people drown simply because they didn't have on a lifejacket. Ware it. Finally, never operate a boat under the influence.

5-Handle Fireworks With Caution-If you're traveling someplace where fireworks are allowed, remember a few tips. Did you know that 50,000 fires are caused by fireworks every year? No wonder they're banned around here. We think of sparklers as "kids stuff". They're hardly that. They burn at 2,000 degrees. That temperature can melt metal. Roman Candle fights may have been the stuff of our childhoods but it goes without saying, never point fireworks at anyone. Keep a water hose or fire extinguisher handy too.

Ok, now we've got all the safety talk out of the way, have a happy and fun 4th of July! We'll see you in the Grand Junction holiday parade!

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